About OUA

The University of Oklahoma in Arezzo (OUA) is OU's Italian Study Center and offers students of all backgrounds and interests the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to live and study abroad in Italy while earning OU degree credit.

Located in the vibrant Tuscan city of Arezzo, OUA provides the best of both worlds: a home-away-from-home with OU classmates, faculty and staff, and the chance to immerse yourself in a new culture.

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OU in Arezzo: the program in italy

the beginning

OU in Arezzo (OUA) began in 2007 with a simple four-week summer program that traveled to Rome, Venice, Florence, and Siena. Just 16 students studied

in Italy that year. Semester programs began in 2008 and the residential center opened in  January of 2016. 

summer programs

At present, OU in Arezzo is host to about 400 students and their faculty between mid-May and the end of July. Both OUHSC and OU Norman are represented by a variety of disciplines from nursing and engineering to art history and Italian language.  

fall & spring

OU in Arezzo also hosts 50-100 students and faculty during the spring and fall semesters from almost all the colleges in Norman. OU in Arezzo is a campus-wide program that serves a multitude of disciplines that represent the humanities as well as professional-degree programs.

site visits & 

internships

Most of the program leaders  are strongly encouraged to incorporate site visits that enhance a practical understanding of the realities of working, studying, and living in Italy. OU in Arezzo also  has a thriving internship program, which gives students a chance to gain hands-on professional experience in their major or area of interest.

THE OUA SAN FRANCESCO CLASSROOM ANNEX

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OU in Arezzo rents a Classroom Annex that helps accommodate the many semester and summer classes, as well as providing additional office space for staff and faculty.

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The OUA San Francesco Classroom Annex is the largest single space in the city center of Arezzo and it can accommodate different sizes of groups for a variety of activities.

The OUA San Francesco Classroom Annex is located across the street from the church that houses one of the masterworks of Italian Early Renaissance: 

The Legend of the True Cross, a fresco cycle by Piero della Francesca.

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The OUA San Francesco Classroom Annex, located in the historic center of Arezzo - a short walk from the Rooney Family Center - houses classrooms, offices, a kitchen and a computer lab for student use.

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The two structures, Rooney Family Center and OUA San Francesco Classroom Annex, consists of roughly 4,000 square meters. Students have access to all of the amenities of the two facilities while studying in Arezzo for a semester or a summer program.

Kirk Duclaux

Director of Italian Programs

"Semester after semester I am witness to the truly remarkable transformation that takes place when students study abroad. They are less likely to judge and more likely to see the importance of accepting the fact that differences are opportunities to learn about other cultures.

Being a part of this transformation is rewarding and gives me confidence that our future as global citizens will be based on empathy and understanding for all." 

Lucio Bianchi

Student Services Coordinator

"I have been working for OUA since 2011. We have grown a lot together. I was a newly graduated student and OUA was couple of programs, 4 staff in a nice big apartment in the city center of Arezzo. Now, as you can easily understand from these blog pages, we are grown-ups! The opportunity of working for an American institution has allowed me to find fertile ground to develop my skills as a Cultural Mediator."

MEET THE TEAM

Leanna Payton

Center Coordinator

"Working for OUA combines my two passions - working with students as a Student Affairs professional and international experiences/traveling. My entire career I have worked in Student Affairs and I have over 10 years of experience in the field of Housing and Residence Life. I love my work and I love my life in Arezzo. Studying abroad changes the lives of students and I love being a part of that experience!"

Marta Agnelli

Finance Manager

"Why do I like working at OUA? Because it's not just about welcoming students to a familiar and supportive environment, being proud to have contributed to making their experience worthwhile, unique and unforgettable.  

It's about connections. OUA builds bridges: bridges between countries, languages, cultures. And most of all, bridges between people."

Charlotte Duclaux

Director of Student Affairs

"I was a study abroad student many years ago and recognized what an amazing opportunity I had to get to know people from another culture and a different way of life. Since I began working at OU in Arezzo, I've met many students and faculty who tell me that their experiences at OUA have touched their lives and changed their way of thinking."

Ursula Armstrong

Special Programs Coordinator

"This job keeps me curious, open to what is different, and alive to other people’s experience of Italy’s history, art, culture, language and natural beauty. I love facilitating professors and students alike in their discovery of all that this country has to offer, and supporting them in their attempt to manage the highs and lows of living abroad. However challenging the experience, there is always something to be learned about others, and above all, about oneself."

Luca Mariottini

IT and Facilities Manager

"As a true 'Aretino' who had never left his 'yard' for work, it was fantastic to receive the opportunity to become an integral part of the OUA Staff.I have been part of the staff since 2016 and I am one of the latest arrivals. Getting our two facilities up and running is a big commitment. Being able, semester after semester and year after year, to guarantee a great experience for all students is very rewarding."

Giulia Lombardi

Administrative Assistant

"I had the chance to study abroad for a year and do an internship in Spain. This experience allowed me not only to be flexible and adapt to different circumstances, but also to grow up professionally. 

Studying abroad is an essential part of lifelong learning, because of the willingness to learn something new and be open-minded: that's why I really like working with international students and faculty."

Fabio Raiola

RFC Cook

"What really makes me happy as the OUA cook is the moment before dinner when students appear in the kitchen after class to take a look at what I'm cooking; just like a family, when the kids come home and ask 'What's for dinner? I'm starving!' I love seeing their reaction and creating that feeling of home with the meals I make for them."

The cleaning crew...

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Patrizia, Mari and Flori

... and the local italian faculty

Director's spotlight

Buongiorno! My name is Kirk Duclaux and I am the Director of OU in Arezzo. I have been in Italy for almost 20 years now. Let me tell you something about my story.

You might be surprised to know that my adventures in education abroad started late. As an undergrad student in Cincinnati, I never really thought about pulling up roots to spend a lot of time in a foreign country. I loved to travel in the States, I had friends, a job, and hobbies… 

Kirk Duclaux and Leanna Payton with a group of students in Pompeii